Discover more from Rescapement
Recommended: The hunt for J.P. Morgan's lost pocket watch
The globe-spanning quest for one of history's great 'lost' watches
Rescapement is a weekly newsletter about watches. To receive news like this straight to your inbox, smash that subscribe button:
From the L.A. Times:
“The double-sided pocket watch had a map of the heavens on one of its two dials, an intricate display whose complexity nodded to the mechanical masterpiece ticking within the solid-gold case.
It told time, of course, but it could also chart the sunrise and sunset, the phases of the moon, the path of constellations, the signs of the Zodiac, and track equinoxes, solstices and the declination of the sun.
The watch's creation 112 years ago must have seemed like a bit of alchemy -- and operating it a brush with magic. Impressive as its features were, the 1.75-pound watch may be just as notable for whom it was believed to be made: John Pierpont Morgan.
Around 1905, the Gilded Age tycoon commissioned the English firm J. Player & Son to create the timepiece, people familiar with the watch have asserted over the decades. It cost 1,000 pounds -- or about $5,000 at the time -- and took four years to make.
But by the 1970s, this complicated and historically important pocket watch commissioned by J.P. Morgan had seemingly disappeared. So an L.A. Times reporter set out to find it. J.P. Morgan’s pocket watch created by J. Player is thought to be the most complicated watch ever created in England, an important feat for a country with a proud history of horology.
In searching for the pocket watch, the L.A. Times reporter meets a descendant of the Player family who has also been searching for the watch, as well as a cast of characters that includes watch and antique dealers.
So does he find it? Check out the entire story to find out, a must-read for anyone interested in the history of horology. The search for J.P. Morgan’s “missing” pocket watch stands beside other great missing watches of history — like Buzz Aldrin’s Omega Speedmaster or John Lennon’s Patek ref. 2499 — mysteries that might never be solved, but that keep the spirit of treasure hunting alive, the spirit that drives so many in this hobby.
Read the full story at the Los Angeles Times, and check out the video below:
Rescapement is a weekly newsletter about watches. To get it delivered to your inbox every weekend, subscribe now: